SB1716 EnrolledLRB096 04132 AJO 14173 b

1    AN ACT concerning civil law.
2    Be it enacted by the People of the State of Illinois,
3represented in the General Assembly:
4    Section 1. Short title. This Act may be cited as the
5Illinois Religious Freedom Protection and Civil Union Act.
6    Section 5. Purposes; rules of construction. This Act shall
7be liberally construed and applied to promote its underlying
8purposes, which are to provide adequate procedures for the
9certification and registration of a civil union and provide
10persons entering into a civil union with the obligations,
11responsibilities, protections, and benefits afforded or
12recognized by the law of Illinois to spouses.
13    Section 10. Definitions. As used in this Act:
14    "Certificate" means a document that certifies that the
15persons named on the certificate have established a civil union
16in this State in compliance with this Act.
17    "Civil union" means a legal relationship between 2 persons,
18of either the same or opposite sex, established pursuant to
19this Act.
20    "Department" means the Department of Public Health.
21    "Officiant" means the person authorized to certify a civil
22union in accordance with Section 40.



SB1716 Enrolled- 2 -LRB096 04132 AJO 14173 b

1    "Party to a civil union" means a person who has established
2a civil union pursuant to this Act. "Party to a civil union"
3means, and shall be included in, any definition or use of the
4terms "spouse", "family", "immediate family", "dependent",
5"next of kin", and other terms that denote the spousal
6relationship, as those terms are used throughout the law.
7    Section 15. Religious freedom. Nothing in this Act shall
8interfere with or regulate the religious practice of any
9religious body. Any religious body, Indian Nation or Tribe or
10Native Group is free to choose whether or not to solemnize or
11officiate a civil union.
12    Section 20. Protections, obligations, and
13responsibilities. A party to a civil union is entitled to the
14same legal obligations, responsibilities, protections, and
15benefits as are afforded or recognized by the law of Illinois
16to spouses, whether they derive from statute, administrative
17rule, policy, common law, or any other source of civil or
18criminal law.
19    Section 25. Prohibited civil unions. The following civil
20unions are prohibited:
21        (1) a civil union entered into prior to both parties
22    attaining 18 years of age;
23        (2) a civil union entered into prior to the dissolution



SB1716 Enrolled- 3 -LRB096 04132 AJO 14173 b

1    of a marriage or civil union or substantially similar legal
2    relationship of one of the parties;
3        (3) a civil union between an ancestor and a descendent
4    or between siblings whether the relationship is by the half
5    or the whole blood or by adoption;
6        (4) a civil union between an aunt or uncle and a niece
7    or nephew, whether the relationship is by the half or the
8    whole blood or by adoption; and
9        (5) a civil union between first cousins.
10    Section 30. Application, license, and certification.
11    (a) The Director of Public Health shall prescribe the form
12for an application, license, and certificate for a civil union.
13    (b) An application for a civil union shall include the
14following information:
15        (1) name, sex, occupation, address, social security
16    number, date and place of birth of each party to the civil
17    union;
18        (2) name and address of the parents or guardian of each
19    party;
20        (3) whether the parties are related to each other and,
21    if so, their relationship; and
22        (4) in the event either party was previously married or
23    entered into a civil union or a substantially similar legal
24    relationship, provide the name, date, place and the court
25    in which the marriage or civil union or substantially



SB1716 Enrolled- 4 -LRB096 04132 AJO 14173 b

1    similar legal relationship was dissolved or declared
2    invalid or the date and place of death of the former spouse
3    or of the party to the civil union or substantially similar
4    legal relationship.
5    (c) When an application has been completed and signed by
6both parties, applicable fees have been paid, and both parties
7have appeared before the county clerk, the county clerk shall
8issue a license and a certificate of civil union upon being
9furnished satisfactory proof that the civil union is not
11    (d) A license becomes effective in the county where it was
12issued one day after the date of issuance, and expires 60 days
13after it becomes effective.
14    (e) The certificate must be completed and returned to the
15county clerk that issued the license within 10 days of the
16civil union.
17    (f) A copy of the completed certificate from the county
18clerk or the return provided to the Department of Public Health
19by a county clerk shall be presumptive evidence of the civil
20union in all courts.
21    Section 35. Duties of the county clerk.
22    (a) Before issuing a civil union license to a person who
23resides and intends to continue to reside in another state, the
24county clerk shall satisfy himself or herself by requiring
25affidavits or otherwise that the person is not prohibited from



SB1716 Enrolled- 5 -LRB096 04132 AJO 14173 b

1entering into a civil union or substantially similar legal
2relationship by the laws of the jurisdiction where he or she
4    (b) Upon receipt of the certificate, the county clerk shall
5notify the Department of Public Health within 45 days. The
6county clerk shall provide the Department of Public Health with
7a return on a form furnished by the Department of Public Health
8and shall substantially consist of the following items:
9        (1) a copy of the application signed and attested to by
10    the applicants, except that in any county in which the
11    information provided in a civil union application is
12    entered into a computer, the county clerk may submit a
13    computer copy of the information without the signatures and
14    attestations of the applicants;
15        (2) the license number;
16        (3) a copy of the certificate; and
17        (4) the date and location of the civil union.
18    (c) Each month, the county clerk shall report to the
19Department of Public Health the total number of civil union
20applications, licenses, and certificates filed during the
22    (d) Any official issuing a license with knowledge that the
23parties are thus prohibited from entering into a civil union
24shall be guilty of a petty offense.
25    Section 40. Certification. A civil union may be certified:



SB1716 Enrolled- 6 -LRB096 04132 AJO 14173 b

1by a judge of a court of record; by a retired judge of a court
2of record, unless the retired judge was removed from office by
3the Judicial Inquiry Board, except that a retired judge shall
4not receive any compensation from the State, a county, or any
5unit of local government in return for the solemnization of a
6civil union and there shall be no effect upon any pension
7benefits conferred by the Judges Retirement System of Illinois;
8by a judge of the Court of Claims; by a county clerk in
9counties having 2,000,000 or more inhabitants; by a public
10official whose powers include solemnization of marriages; or in
11accordance with the prescriptions of any religious
12denomination, Indian Nation or Tribe or Native Group, provided
13that when such prescriptions require an officiant, the
14officiant be in good standing with his or her religious
15denomination, Indian Nation or Tribe or Native Group. The
16person performing a civil union shall complete the certificate
17and forward it to the county clerk within 10 days after a civil
19    Section 45. Dissolution; declaration of invalidity. Any
20person who enters into a civil union in Illinois consents to
21the jurisdiction of the courts of Illinois for the purpose of
22any action relating to a civil union even if one or both
23parties cease to reside in this State. A court shall enter a
24judgment of dissolution of a civil union if at the time the
25action is commenced it meets the grounds for dissolution set



SB1716 Enrolled- 7 -LRB096 04132 AJO 14173 b

1forth in Section 401 of the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution
2of Marriage Act. The provisions of Sections 401 through 413 of
3the Illinois Marriage and Dissolution of Marriage Act shall
4apply to a dissolution of a civil union. The provisions of
5Sections 301 through 306 of the Illinois Marriage and
6Dissolution of Marriage Act shall apply to the declaration of
7invalidity of a civil union.
8    Section 50. Application of the Civil Practice Law. The
9provisions of the Civil Practice Law shall apply to all
10proceedings under this Act, except as otherwise provided in
11this Act. A proceeding for dissolution of a civil union or
12declaration of invalidity of a civil union shall be entitled
13"In re the Civil Union of ... and ...". The initial pleading in
14all proceedings under this Act shall be denominated a petition.
15A responsive pleading shall be denominated a response. All
16other pleadings under this Act shall be denominated as provided
17in the Civil Practice Law.
18    Section 55. Venue. The proceedings shall be had in the
19county where the petitioner or respondent resides or where the
20parties' certificate of civil union was issued, except as
21otherwise provided herein, but process may be directed to any
22county in the State. Objection to venue is barred if not made
23within such time as the respondent's response is due. In no
24event shall venue be deemed jurisdictional.



SB1716 Enrolled- 8 -LRB096 04132 AJO 14173 b

1    Section 60. Reciprocity. A marriage between persons of the
2same sex, a civil union, or a substantially similar legal
3relationship other than common law marriage, legally entered
4into in another jurisdiction, shall be recognized in Illinois
5as a civil union.
6    Section 90. Severability. If any part of this Act or its
7application to any person or circumstance is adjudged invalid,
8the adjudication or application shall not affect the validity
9of this Act as a whole or of any other part.